Who uses smart card? Understanding public transport payment preference in developing contexts, a case study of Manila's LRT-1

The culture of “tingi-tingi” or sachet economy provides a strong backdrop to better understand the payment mode preference of the riding public in the Philippines. First, the use of single journey tickets (SJT) reflects the purchasing practices amongst the urban poor thereby affecting the promotion and uptake of public transport smart cards. Second, as a glocalization strategy, it can inform what, how, when, and why services that has global uptake can be tailored towards the realities of a differentiated, local market conditions.Categorical principal component analysis (CATPCA) is presented to determine the key variables explaining the likelihood of uptake of smart cards for public transport passengers in the Philippines. The Metro Manila Light Rail Transit Line 1 (LRT-1) presents an appropriate context to examine how the glocalization of smart cards can help improve the quality of public transport services, and to provide planning and policy recommendations on smart card uptake and integrated ticketing, with the end goal of improving public transport provision and management. LRT-1 alongside its change in management, also introduced a new smart card payment system. However, more than half continue to use single journey tickets.The model parameters are estimated using primary survey data collected from LRT-1 passengers. Transit smart card has been widely used around the world and effectively reduces waiting time for passengers who used to purchase paper tickets.The main results of the model reveal that: (1) only groups with high education background, stable income, or with stable job would likely to use smart card; (2) passengers with lower education level, lower income, or with unstable job prefer to use single journey ticket; and (3) the sachet economy is strongly associated with the purchasing practices amongst Filipinos, particularly the urban poor, hence may affect the promotion and uptake of public transit smart cards. These findings may inform changes to the introduction of alternative payment schemes and the planning of public transport policies that recognise the need for an effective glocalization strategy, paving the way towards improved public transport service and provision.


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  • Accession Number: 01689487
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Oct 10 2018 3:11PM